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May 30, 2007 (6:49 am)
We're expecting our first child in november, and we have 2 dogs (boxer and a lab) that will occasionally travel with us. We like the freestyle, but a friend just recommended the mazda 5, any thoughts?
#124 of 149 Re: Baby on the way [birdsondabat]
May 30, 2007 (6:55 am)
You certainly shouldn't go wrong with a Mazda 5. Nice car.
Without having tested a Freestyle I will tell you one thing. If you are buying new it will take an enormous depreciation hit right off the bat. In addition to the normal hit new domestics and some other makes take you have the additional factor of Ford's dropping the Freestyle name in the fall. This doesn't make the Freestyle a bad car - not at all. It just lowers the value of it if you want to sell because in general people don't like buying a car that is no longer made and most won't realize that the new TaurusX is just the Freestyle.
#125 of 149 Re: Baby on the way [fezo]
May 30, 2007 (7:06 am)
I went with the freestyle because with three kids I wanted to have the option of have all three sit in the middle row. Cars with three seats in the middle are limited, esp. at an under 25K price point.
If I didn't have that requirement I would have JUMPED on the chance to get a Mazda. The mazda's we've had we've LOVED, drive nicely, good/reasonable gas milage. Actually planning to get the five when this lease is done and my oldest is large/old enough to sit up front.
My only concern for you is space. If you frequently travel with kid and dogs AND all the kid accesories - esp a stroller which can take up quite a chunk of cargo space - the 5 might be small. I'd suggest snagging a stroller from a friend (or if you have one, use it) and go see how it fits in the car and then figure if you'll have enough space. If it is not that frequently, probably not an issue.
Good luck and congratulations.
p.s. be sure the stroller you 'size' is the kind you can attach the car seat to - not the typical umbrella stroller you see older babies (toddlers, really0 in. Trust me, there will be many times it'll be easier to keep the baby in the pumpkin/rear facing car seat to get to and from the car, than transfer it out of that seat!
#126 of 149 Re: Baby on the way [njmom91]
May 30, 2007 (8:50 am)
You sound perfect for the Freestyle. We went one more kid than that and suddenly options limit in a hurry! Put us in minivan territory.
#127 of 149 Accessing 3rd row w/o moving car seats
Aug 29, 2007 (3:32 pm)
We have 2 children in car seats and want a mid-sized SUV or crossover that has a third row seat that can be accessed without having to move the car seats. We want to basically treat the car seats as permanent fixtures in the second row. Any recommendations? We are trying to avoid monster SUVs like the Expedition, etc., and of course the very un-hip minivans (please keep your opinions to yourself if you like minivans).
The best 3rd row seat arrangement we have seen to suit this purpose is in the old Land Rovers, where you could just walk around the back and step up through the back door by a hydraulic step. Those vehicles were a little too tall for us, however, and the second row doors didn't have much room to get kids in and out.
We are about to purchase a car (preferably used), so we need to know all the possible options in order to decide upon the one we like best. Therefore, your thoroughness in responding would be greatly appreciated.
#128 of 149 Re: Accessing 3rd row w/o moving car seats [whollytemple]
Aug 29, 2007 (5:47 pm)
The Chrysler Pacifica has 3 rows and seating for 6, the middle row of seats are fixed. The Ford Taurus X(formerly known as the Freestyle) and Mazda5 have similar arrangements.
All three of these are relatively cheap on the used market, with the Pacifica being the most plentiful.
#129 of 149 Re: Accessing 3rd row w/o moving car seats [guss]
Aug 29, 2007 (6:49 pm)
Those are good choices. The Ford and Chrysler should be pretty easy to find at a reasonable price.
Am biting my tongue on the minivan comment which is tough because they are the only class of vehicle where they almost all fit your criteria.
The Freestyle has the added bonus as a used vehicle - it's price should be lower because of the name change. Yeah, it's the same basic vehicle but the market does funny things to defunct names.
Aug 30, 2007 (10:20 am)
The new LR3s have third row access from either driver or passenger side. The outboard seats flip down and out of the way with two lever pulls.
You could put one child seat in one outboard 2nd row seat and one child seat in the center 2nd row seat.
Not sure what your price range is but you can find Land Rover certified LR3s with a third row in the low to mid 30 range now. They are thirsty trucks though even with the V6 which I don't recommend as it just doesn't have enough power.
I have never done this but I just checked and I think you could...
Since every seat in the LR3 goes up and down independently you could unbolt the center 2nd row seat and just pull out out of the vehicle. Then you can simply walk between the two outboard seats like they were captain's chairs.
#131 of 149 Re: Help! 7 passenger, 3 middle seats, under 25K??! [njmom91]
Sep 04, 2007 (7:49 pm)
The 2008 Dodge minivan has room for seven, with a bench middle seat that you can get with intergrated child seats built in.